Ubisoft and Epic Games are partnering to release The Division 2 on the Epic Games Store. Pre-orders for the Ultimate, Gold, and Standard editions of The Division 2 on PC are already available on Epic's online storefront and will include access to the game’s upcoming private beta.
The press release says that any pre-orders "previously placed elsewhere will still be honored," which seems to suggest that outside of the Ubisoft Store, The Division 2 will only be available on Epic Games Store going forward. We reached out to Ubisoft to ask whether this means The Division 2 will be skipping Steam and an Ubisoft representative responded, “We currently have no plans on releasing Tom Clancy’s The Division 2 on Steam.”
Ubisoft also added that it will “work to integrate key components of Ubisoft’s Uplay and Epic’s online services to provide gamers from both ecosystems with more seamless social features and interoperability.” Ubisoft will also be working with Epic Games to “partner on additional select titles to be announced during the coming year.”
Ubisoft is the latest major game developer to skip Steam for a major video game launch. Companies like Bethesda and Activision have already skipped Steam when releasing their most recent major releases. Bethesda sold Fallout 76 exclusively on the Bethesda Store, while Activision released Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 on Blizzard's Battle.net.
One of the reasons why big companies are leaving Steam is because of Valve’s 30 percent cut on revenue generated from Steam sales. When Epic Games announced its competing online store, the company also detailed its more competitive 88/12 revenue sharing model as opposed to Steam's 70/30. Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney specifically cited this competitive revenue model in his statement following the news. "As long-time fans and partners of Ubisoft, we're thrilled to bring a range of awesome Ubisoft games to the Epic Games Story," he said.
Although Steam recently announced some changes to its revenue sharing model that will see developers take a 75/25 percent split on revenue over $10 million in sales, and a 80/20 percent split on revenue past $50 million, that's still not as much as what Epic is offering developers as a baseline. Games on the Epic Games Store will see even more revenue if they develop their titles using Epic’s Unreal Engine.
"Epic continues to disrupt the video game industry, and their third party digital distribution model is the latest example, and something Ubisoft wants to support," said Chris Early, Ubisoft vice president of partnerships, in a statement.
The Division 2 is a sequel to the live-service military game developed by Massive. Taking place months after a deadly virus released in New York City caused a catastrophic global crisis, players are tasked with saving a collapsed Washington D.C. controlled by warring factions. The Division 2 can be played solo or co-op, and Ubisoft is promising a “robust” endgame with free DLC content.
The Division 2 is coming to PC, Xbox One, and PS4 on March 15. For more check out our Division 2 guide for news, treailers, and release info.